Scientific American was founded by inventor and publisher Rufus M. Porter in 1845 as a four page weekly newspaper. Throughout its early years, much emphasis was placed on reports of what was going on at the U.S. Patent Office. It also reported on a broad range of inventions including perpetual motion machines, an 1860 device for buoying vessels by Abraham Lincoln, and the universal joint which now finds place in nearly every automobile manufactured. Porter sold the newspaper to Alfred Ely Beach and Orson Desaix Munn I a mere 10 months after founding it. Until 1948 it remained owned by Munn & Company. (Description from Wikipedia.)
This collection has most of the issues printed by Scientific American between the years of 1845 and 1909.